| Staff REPORTER |
ITANAGAR, Jan 24: The People’s Party of Arunachal (PPA) has decided to field the young GB-turned-politician Leki Norbu for the February 27 bye-election to Lumla Assembly Constituency in Tawang district.
His candidature was announced by PPA president Kahfa Bengia and general secretary Kaling Jerang during a press conference here on Tuesday. With this, PPA became the first political party to announce its official nominee for the forthcoming bypoll.
37-year-old Norbu was the Gaon Burah of Zemineng village under Dudunghar circle, Lumla for 12 years from 2009 to 2020 before he relinquished the GB post to contest the 2020 Panchayat polls for the Zilla Parishad Member’s seat.
The Lumla Assembly seat fell vacant following the demise of incumbent BJP MLA Jambey Tashi on November 2 last year.
As per the ECI poll schedule, the last date of filing nominations is February 7 and scrutiny of nominations is scheduled on February 8, while February 10 is the last date for withdrawal of candidatures. Counting of votes will take place on March 2.
“The PPA will be fighting for restoration of democracy, ending nepotism & pariwarvaad, ending vast socio-economic inequalities in Lumla Assembly Constituency in particular and Tawang district in general. For how long will people of Tawang district continue to suffer under one-family rule? The party seeks fair chance from the people of the state and sincerely appeals for a second chance as it is the only party with a viable alternative,” the PPA leadership said.
Bengia also said that the party is not against the family members of the late MLA or the state government by putting up a candidate for the bypoll. “We want to make use of our democratic rights and to provide democratic rights to the people of the constituency,” he added.
While making his reasons for contesting the bye-election known, Norbu claimed that fruits of development through various schemes and Govt programmes have not been reaching the masses in Lumla since last many years. Govt subsidies and benefits in departments like agriculture, horticulture, etc have not been reaching the actual beneficiaries. Large-scale mismanagement has been going on in the constituency, he alleged. He promised to work for the overall development of Lumla, if elected.
Hoping for a free and fair bye-election, PPA leader Kaling Jerang claimed that people of Lumla are not happy with family politics. “The state has countless issues including corruption but the BJP led state government has failed to solve it, so we as a regional party will look at all the matters for the welfare of the state if we get a chance,” he added.
Further informing about the elected legislators jumping ship after getting elected, he lamented that PPA has been the biggest victim of defections. He further added that the PPA is working on creating a stringent internal mechanism to curb the menace of defections from the party.